15 Oct October President’s update for members

Congratulations to my fellow Board Directors who nominated, and have been elected unopposed for a further term on the AAA Board – ensuring continuity in our strategies to further develop our industry and meet the challenges thrown at us by COVID-19.

It has been a privilege to be the Interim President for the past few months.  I did not nominate for the Presidency as I was not in a position to commit to a full 3 year term,.  I thank Carolyn, Mick, Brett, Cathi, Sarah, Trevor and Amanda for their support whilst IP.

I feel very positive about Brett being our next President.  He has my full support.  In the past few months since joining the Board, I have found Brett to be objective, passionate and very focused on developing our industry.   Dare I say, being a “tad” younger, he brings a fresh, energetic approach, sometimes looking through a different prism. Without meaning to sound like a “polly” – “it is time” we have a generational change in our leadership.

Joint Regional Presidents and Board Meeting: We recently held a joint zoom meeting between the Regional Presidents and the full Board.  This gave both parties the opportunity to update each other on current strategies and activities, share ideas and ask questions.  These meetings are minuted with the intention Regional Presidents share this information with their Regional Committees and include in Regional newsletters.

Covid Impact: Whist Covid is certainly presenting a few challenges, it is also creating some “silver linings”.  One in particular is the increased demand for rural real estate, in particular small acreage, as city dwellers try to escape city (covid) congestion.  What better picture than to see a couple of alpacas out their kitchen window. Be sure when making the sale – you encourage joining the AAA where the new owners can receive support and information on how to care for their alpacas.

Yes, our industry is far more than a “pet” industry, but how many of us started this way?  I hear so many stories of people within a few years increasing their land holding once they are hooked and become active in one of our many industry segments – maybe we should have a AAA real estate business!

The shearing season is upon us in most States.  Shearing is one of the most exciting days in the alpaca calendar – with the shears revealing the results of our breeding decisions.  Please keep your animals safe by providing shelter and plenty of feed during these crazy weather patterns.  I hope everyone is choosing their best fleeces to enter the Fleece Challenge.  What better way to benchmark your breeding program against the best in our industry and obtain feedback via the score card on your fleeces individual traits.

Stay safe in this COVID environment.  Our thoughts are with our alpaca friends caught in the Melbourne lockdown.  PW

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